Written for the My Favo(u)rite Magazine Project, organised by Jeremy Leslie and Andrew Losowsky to raise funds to help Bob Newman, US art director and magazine lover, after he had a seizure and collapsed. The brief was: “Choose your favourite single magazine issue, and tell us about it. Any magazine, from any country, from any era.”
Linus Magazine. Bought in Moroni’s, home of magazines, on Old Compton Street, Soho, in May 1970, when I was still buying boy’s comics full of war and derring-do. I loved Peanuts – who didn’t? It had Snoopy on the cover, so it was an obvious purchase. But inside, a world unknown. Put together by Ralph Steadman and Frank Dickens, it ranged across the globe to find extraordinary things, all done in the name of comics. It was racy, it was smart, it was funny. It placed Dickens’ none-more-British detective strip bang up against Guido Crepax’s Nazis and nubiles from Milan. It had Fellini’s sketches! It had The Upside-Down World of Gustave Verbeek, where you read the strip then turned it over for the conclusion of the story, and the drawings miraculously made sense that way too… Coming across Roland Topor probably affected my entire career in magazines. As soon as I saw Brad Holland and Peter Till’s work, I recognised the visual brilliance that I’d so admired in Topor. This was extraordinary stuff, and I never found another issue, but, like the Velvet Underground, its work was done.
5 thoughts on “Interlude: Linus Magazine”
Steadman, Holland, Topor, and Schultz all in one issue? If I had found such an elusive, dreamlike combination of talents under the same cover, my life after that wouldn’t have been the same either.
This is the type of magazine that, when I was a kid, reassured me I wasn’t the only one in the world who liked these kinds of artists—although it always left me heart-broken, wondering why a second issue was apparently never produced. It’s a blink-and-you-miss-it discovery that not only affects you at an impressionable age but also warms you up with a comforting blanket of kinetic comradery.
Lovely memory and stellar mixture of work, thank you for sharing these.
I meant that, as soon as I was aware of Brad Holland and Peter Till’s illustrations years later, I saw the same kind of minds at work. Sorry for the ambiguity. And there were more issues, I just never found them…
Would you please give me the issues of Linus or other newspapers in which you found Topor’s drawings ? Thank you very much.
Hi Alexandre, send me your email and I’ll scan the Topor pages for you. It’s the Spring issue, but I’ll have to look what year it is. Maybe 1970…
Forgot to swoon at one other name: Fellini !!!!